Metis actor and proud Calgary Drop-In supporter Tom Jackson was recently awarded a lifetime achievement award from the Governor General for his efforts to help people living in poverty and homelessness.

According to Jackson, “In the mid sixties and early seventies, there were great songwriters who influenced the world: Paul Simon, Buffy Sainte-Marie, Kris Kristofferson, Joan Baez. There was a radical, sometimes militant movement surfacing in North America (the American Indian Movement, the Red Power Movement). These were changing times for ‘Indian’ people – a chance to stand up and fight for your rights as a human being. I had to choose a weapon. Ballads or bullets. I chose ballads.”

Watch the following National Film Board video to learn more about how Jackson came to use his gift of song to contribute hundreds of millions of dollars to helping people living in poverty and homelessness. Three DI clients act in the video. Do you recognize them?

Ballads Not Bullets: Tom Jackson by Marie Humber Clements, National Film Board of Canada